MO-DE-304-00: Workforce Assessment Committee Update



The Abt study of medical physicist work values for radiation oncology physics services, Round IV is completed. It supersedes the Abt III study of 2008. The 2015 Abt study measured qualified medical physicist (QMP) work associated with routine radiation oncology procedures as well as some special procedures. As before, a work model was created to allow the medical physicist to defend QMP work based on both routine and special procedures service mix. The work model can be used to develop a cost justification report for setting charges for radiation oncology physics services. The Abt study Round IV was designed to empower the medical physicist to negotiate a service or employment contract with providers based on measured national QMP workforce and staffing data.

For a variety of reasons, the diagnostic imaging contingent of AAPM has had a more difficult time trying estimate workforce requirements than their therapy counterparts. Over the past several years, the Diagnostic Work and Workforce Study Subcommittee (DWWSS) has collected survey data from AAPM members, but the data have been very difficult to interpret. The DWWSS has reached out to include more AAPM volunteers to create a more full and accurate representation of actual clinical practice models on the subcommittee. Though much work remains, through hours of discussion and brainstorming, the DWWSS has somewhat of a clear path forward. This talk will provide attendees with an update on the efforts of the subcommittee.

Learning Objectives:

  • 1.Understand the new information documented in the Abt studies.
  • 2.Understand how to use the Abt studies to justify medical physicist staffing.
  • 3.Learn relevant historical information on imaging physicist workforce.
  • 4.Understand the process of the DWWSS in 2014.
  • 5.Understand the intended path forward for the DWWSS.